“It is widely accepted notion among painters that it does not matter what one paints as long as it is well painted. This is the essence of academicism. There is no such thing as good painting about nothing…”
Mark Rothko, New York. 1958
Mark Rothko has clearly had a huge impact on the development of painting across the world, and he continues to push modern artists to experiment and express themselves as they try to make sense of what painting can be like.
By way of a homage to the memory of the world-renowned artist, Mark Rothko, and his artistic legacy, come September, Daugavpils becomes a creative forum for Latvian and international artists who cross borders and continents to spend two weeks in the residency of Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre and create unique artwork, inspired by the atmosphere and cultural environment of Rothko’s childhood city, Daugavpils fortress and Latgale region.
The tradition of the international painting symposium “Mark Rothko” dates back to 2004, when it was organised as a plein air. This year, the symposium is held for the fifteenth time. It aims to raise awareness of the uniqueness of Mark Rothko’s artistic legacy, draw attention to Daugavpils as the artist’s hometown and promote interest in Daugavpils as an artistically stimulating environment as well as continue building the modern-day art collection of Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre.
In a way, the year 2004 helped ReStart Daugavpils as a regional centre for dynamic artistic processes, changing the environment and habits of artists and putting Daugavpils on the world map as a place with a truly global outreach and reputation.
The international painting symposium, “Mark Rothko 2019”, has brought together ten artists from eight countries: Barbara Rosengarth (Germany), Chongyin Yuan (China), Dustyn Bork (USA), Ieva Lapiņa-Strazdīte (Latvia), James Kendall Higgins (USA), Kuzana Ogg (USA), Linda Kozule (Latvia), Rebecca Bradley (UK/ Ireland), Ritu Aggarwal (India) and Sergey Kryshtapovich (Belarus).